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UNWANTED NYC PETS is dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and placement of homeless animals, many of whom are rescued at the very last moment from euthanasia at city shelters. We feel that every animal deserves a loving home. The love and individual care provided by Unwanted NYC Pets enables our animals to eventually find their permanent homes. We are not a shelter, but instead rely solely on a network of volunteer foster homes. We depend on the generosity of fellow animal lovers to help defray the costs which include veterinary bills and other medical expenses for animals who come to us sick or in need of special care, as well as food, supplies and other items needed for the safety and comfort of our rescues.

UNWANTED NYC PETS -  We are Animal Rescuers


"We have patted a mangy head with a bare hand. We have hugged the vicious and afraid. We have fallen in love a thousand times. Our work is never done, our homes

are never quiet, our wallets are always empty, but our hearts are always full.

Rescuing one animal may not change the world, but for that one animal, the world

will be changed forever. Doing what you love is freedom. Loving what you do is happiness!" -author unknown 


Betina Wassermann

Founder and President

Betina was born and bred in NYC. Her love for animals is part of her DNA. Her mother Valerie never passed a stray she did not bring home, and thus began the family tradition. After being diagnosed and beating cancer, Betina was determined to make her life count, rescuing animals was her passion. Betina currently spends countless hours of her "off-time" working for Unwanted NYC Pets. Betina is a graduate of Animal Behavior College and works as a positive reinforcement trainer. Betina currently resides in Athens, GA and is planning to expand the rescue in her area.

Kristin Livan

Vice President

Kristin has been a dog lover since she was a little girl, in fact she wanted to be around dogs so much she persued a career in professional grooming and opened her own shop in Brooklyn, NY called Tiny Tails. Although Kristin works 12 hour days, she continues to work tirelessly in her rescue efforts, never stopping even to catch her breath. Like Lennon and McCartney, Kristin and Betina met and made one hell of a duo. Having met on Facebook after Kristin rescued a horribly neglected dog from Animal Care and Control, Kristin was welcomed with opened arms and hearts into the "small but mighty" Unwanted team shortly after its inception. Kristin is the backbone of the organization, and comes to us with a vast knowledge of canine training and behavior, having also graduated as a certified trainer from the accredited Animal Behavior College. She is now helping to exand Unwanted's Southern Chapter in Brevard County, FL.

Conner Tribble


Conner Tribble is an avid animal lover, musician, song writer and reverend.  He currently works at the legendary Cafe Wha in Greenwich Village, NY as an entertainer. His spare time is spent caring for the numerous rescues

that he and Betina have brought into their home.

Victoria Brooks

Board Member

Victoria has been an animal rights advocate since she was big enough to climb on her soap box. A native New Yorker born to animal lovers, Victoria has never said no to an animal of any kind. From mice to dogs, lizards to cats, she has opened her home to every and any animal in need that crossed her path. Her love of animals followed her to college with her Bachlors in Fine Art thesis, entitled "Sanctuary", comprising solely of photographs of the animals that shaped her belief system.  Despite the cynicism she faces, her heart only beats for the creature of the world and will never stop her animal rights advocacy until every cage is empty. Victoria currently lives in Brooklyn with her rescued iguana, turtle, and two dogs.

Nick Foden

Board Member

Nick is a California Bay Area native, transplanted to Brooklyn six years ago after completing college in San Francisco with a BA in Psychology and an ABKA Pet Tech Certification from A Dog's Life. With the exception of college, Nick has always had one or more dogs and volunteered at multiple city shelters during his high school years. Nick has enthusiastically joined us on our mission of saving as many pets in the NYC shelter system as possible. Residing in Brooklyn he is very active with friends and strangers helping Unwanted to reach a larger audience and place more of these special animals in loving permanent homes. 

Marianne Apollo Tramelli

Board Member

Marianne, a lifelong New Yorker, has always loved animals and has shared her life with hamsters, fish, birds, dogs, and cats.  This includes an abandoned dog and a cat that she rescued from the streets of her neighborhood.  After the passing of her dog - Ciao, and missing his unconditional love and companionship, Marianne knew she again needed to adopt. It was also a defining moment in her life and it became more than just adopting but to also help change the lives of those animals that wind up in horrible conditions and are mistreated and abused.  She had an opportunity to meet several  members of the Unwanted NYC Pets team and got connected and has since assisted with communicating with people on Facebook, fostering and doing outreach with the Columbia University community to share the message of “adopt don’t shop” and building a presence for support of Unwanted’s mission.

Lori Valenti

Board Member

Lori came to us after we rescued Sweetness, our two year old lab/mix who had puppies three weeks after being saved from death row. She selflessly volunteered to walk Sweetness, clean and care for her pups in addition to her full time job. Lori is an animal lover who tried doing the most she could for local rescues until she came to Unwanted NYC Pets. We saw the love, drive and dedication in Lori that we wanted on our team. Lori has single handedly raised enough funds to help so many dogs in our care by spreading our message throughout Brooklyn.

Wendy Weiss

Board Member

Wendy loves to name her pets after rockers! After helping to trap, spay and neuter the feral cats in her yard, she appropriately named them, Earth, Wind and Fire! Wendy teaches high school English in Bayside, Queens where her student population is amongst the most ethnically diverse in the world. Weiss states, "I am fortunate to have the opportunity to work with some of N.Y.C.'s bright young minds. I try to bridge academics with awareness of the plight of shelter animals, and all animals. Discussions range from the amazing ways that dogs benefit and serve mankind, to researching military dogs and dogs who service the handicapped. We read and write about the African Elephants, who are in danger of extinction as demand for their ivory increases, to the misrepresentation of various breeds, such as Pit Bulls, and we learn about the atrocities of corporate farming. Students are eager to share stories about their own pets and to learn about animals in the world.” Wendy encourages ALL educators to incorporate animal awareness into their lessons.

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We are a 100% volunteer rescue organization. Please Donate 

We are a 100% volunteer rescue organization. Please Donate 

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